Sticky Lemon Tofu

Sticky Lemon Tofu

“Sticky lemon tofu is a plant-based version of a popular Chinese takeaway menu item. It has garlicky bits of baked tofu tossed in a sticky lemon sauce, and it’s just perfect for an effortless weeknight dinner.”

 – Vegan Cocette


For the tofu
  • 1 x 400 g (1 lb) block extra firm tofu
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 large garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
For the sauce
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 large garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated
  • ½ teaspoon red chilli flakes
  • Juice and zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch dissolved into 6 tablespoons hot water
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Spring onions (scallions), to serve, optional
  • Sesame seeds, optional, to serve


  1. Start by making the tofu. Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) and cover a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Add the cubed tofu to a large bowl and mix with the soy sauce, garlic, cornstarch, vegetable oil and salt and pepper. Toss gently with a spatula until all tofu pieces are well covered. Arrange the tofu bits in a single layer on the baking sheet. Bake for 15-20 minutes until crispy, flipping them halfway through.
  3. Meanwhile, make the sauce. Add the soy sauce, garlic and ginger to a large pan and heat it over medium heat until it bubbles.
  4. Stir in the red chilli flakes, lemon zest and juice, rice vinegar and brown sugar and bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally so the sugar dissolves.
  5. Lower the heat and simmer for 2-3 minutes until slightly thickened.
  6. Stir in the cornstarch mixture and continue to cook for another minute until the sauce thickens further.
  7. Add the baked tofu to the pan and toss gently until coated in sauce. Serve over freshly boiled rice, topped with chopped spring onion and sesame seeds, if you like.